Wednesday, 20 May 2020
Department of Justice and Equality
First it is important to note that the Office of Public Works has responsibility for the provision and maintenance of Garda accommodation. Works in relation to Garda accommodation are therefore progressed by the Garda authorities working in close cooperation with the Office of Public Works (OPW).
I am advised that the works required to reopen Rush Garda station have been completed and that the building has been handed over by the OPW to the Garda authorities.
I am informed however, that in light of the current Covid-19 pandemic, the IT works which will be required prior to Rush station becoming operational have not yet been carried out.
More generally and as the Deputy may be aware, as part of its action to mitigate the risks around the transmission of Covid-19 between Garda personnel and/or members of the public, Garda management has identified a range of alternative accommodation including educational institutions, local community facilities and so on, which are available to Garda management across the country in order to assist in protecting members and staff against Covid-19. I understand that these facilities, where in use, are acting as a facility supplementary to the local Garda Station, to ensure compliance with social distancing guidelines, minimising the concentration of personnel in a particular location. This contributes to the protection of Garda members and staff and to the organisational resilience of An Garda Síochána.
I am informed that, in a similar context, Rush station is currently being held as a contingency building, in the event other stations become impacted by Covid-19 infection. I am further advised that when the public health situation allows, Rush Garda station will reopen to the public.